Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Upcoming plays for December:

At the Goodspeed Opera House in East Haddam, Connecticut: “Jim Henson’s Emmet Otter” December 5th through January 3, 2010.

“As Christmas approaches the world of Frogtown Hollow, Emmet Otter and his Ma can only dream of buying each other gifts. So when a Christmas Eve talent contest is announced, both secretly enter, hoping to win the prize money. In a heartwarming twist on "The Gift of the Magi," Emmet and Ma risk all they have and end up with the greatest grand prize of all. Based on director Jim Henson's television feature, this new theatrical adaptation features a lovable mix of actors and puppet characters from The Jim Henson Company and a toe-tapping score. It's a classic holiday musical for all ages!”

Music and Lyrics by Paul Williams, book by Timothy A. McDonald and Christopher Gattelli. Directed and choreographed by Christopher Gattelli

At the Majectic Theater in West Springfield, Mass. “Piecemeal - The Frankenstein Musical” running through December 6th. Written by Howard Odentz, this “is the imaginative, dark, and very funny spin on Mary Shelley’s classic novel by re-telling the strange events that lead to the creation of Frankenstein’s monster. Igor, the hunchbacked undertaker’s son, yearns to be a doctor. By chance he meets the young Victor Frankenstein, who is destined to follow in his family’s medical footstep, but whose heart is set instead on a fashion career. He and Igor swap identities. Victor heads off to France to pursue his passion while Igor takes his new name and Victor’s pre-paid admission papers to the University. There he becomes the prized pupil of Professor Krempe, who’s been secretly working on reanimation. Add in a love triangle with Victor’s betrothed, the beautiful Elizabeth Lavenza, and you have “PIECEMEAL.”

At the Merrimack Repertory Theatre in Lowell, Mass., the regional premiere of “Heroes” by Gerald Sibleyras, adapted by Tom Stoppard opens tomorrow, November 19th and runs through December 13th. “Henri, Gustave and Philippe survived World War I. Forty years later, as residents in a veterans’ home and armed only with what is left of their wits and a 200-pound stone dog, they battle old age, nagging war injuries, and a masochistic nun. A heartwarming tale of camaraderie and a moving portrait of the frustrations inherent in growing older.”

At the Portland Stage, Portland, Maine, “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens runs from November 27th through December 24th. “Travel back in time to Victorian England where ghosts, time travel, and memories help a cold and lonely old miser regain his heart. Our adaptation remains remarkably true to Dickens' original book. Dickens' story seems best told in his words, allowing audiences to hear the richness of his language, and to experience the story of Scrooge's encounters with the spirits of past, present, and yet-to-come in the way that the author intended.”

The Shubert Theatre of New Haven, Connecticut, which opened on December 11, 1914, is celebrating its 95th anniversary with a special event December 11th, and continue on Sunday, December 13th.

Schedule of Anniversary Events:

Friday, December 11
Guided Tours of the Shubert Theater and Backstage: 12:30, 1:30, 2:30, 3:30
Rededication Program: 7:00pm
Followed by screening of "Shubert Moments" and feature film "The Sound of Music"

“The day-long 95th Anniversary Celebratory Events begins on Friday, December 11 with free tours of the theater and backstage areas including the famous “Graffiti Walls” featuring murals of past shows and cast signatures. Tours will run on the hour from 12:30–3:30pm. A rededication ceremony on the Shubert Stage hosted by Shubert staff and City of New Haven officials begins at 7pm, followed by a screening of “Shubert Moments,” a short film highlighting the Shubert’s rich theatrical history, and the feature film, “The Sound of Music.” This film was selected because of the show’s original association with the Shubert Theater – the original stage production of “The Sound of Music” made its World Premiere on the Shubert stage in October, 1959. Having recently marked the 50th Anniversary of its Shubert stage premiere, it is particularly appropriate to include the film version of this beloved Rodgers and Hammerstein classic as part of the Shubert’s Anniversary events.

The celebration continues on Sunday, December 13 with a Free Family Fun Day from 11am–3pm. Kid-friendly events including holiday arts & crafts projects and face painting and refreshments will be available throughout the day in the Shubert lobby. Participants will be entertained with Holiday Carols performed by New Haven youth choirs and a special visit by Santa Claus! Patrons will also be treated to a series of holiday-themed film shorts in the Shubert Theater.”

At The Bushnell in Hartford, Connecticut. “Amahl and the Night Visitors” with The Mostly Baroque Players - David Ole Hartman, Conductor and John Tedeschi, Stage Director/King Melchior - present a fully staged performance of the one act Christmas themed opera, Amahl and the Night Visitors by Gian Carlo Menotti. “The story concerns an unannounced visit by the Three Kings to a poor, crippled, shepherd boy and his widowed mother on their way to venerate the Christ Child in Bethlehem.” Starring Toby Newman as the Mother, Johan Hartman as Amahl, Wayne Rivera as King Kaspar, Stewart Battle as King Balthazar and Christopher Stone as the Page.

At Boston’s The Huntington, “A Civil War Christmas” by Paula Vogel will run until December 13th. “It's Christmas Eve 1864. In the White House, President and Mrs. Lincoln plot their gift-giving. On the Potomac, a young rebel soldier challenges a Union blacksmith's mercy. In the streets, a fugitive from slavery searches for her daughter on the night she finds freedom. In this new play with music from Pulitzer Prize winner Paula Vogel, these stories and more are woven into an American tapestry, showing us that the gladness of one's heart is the greatest gift of all. This production includes beloved holiday music and will be enhanced by local choirs caroling before each performance.”

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